Enigma 2023 Call for Participation

Sponsored by USENIX, the Advanced Computing Systems Association.

Important Dates

  • Submissions due: Wednesday, August 24, 2022, 11:59 pm Pacific Daylight Time (PDT)
  • Notification to submitters: Thursday, September 29, 2022
  • Program announced: November 2022
  • Conference dates: January 24–26, 2023, in Santa Clara, CA, USA

Conference Organizers

Enigma: Security and Privacy Ideas That Matter

Enigma centers on a single track of engaging talks covering a wide range of topics in security and privacy. Our goal is to clearly explain emerging threats and defenses in the growing intersection of society and technology, and to foster an intelligent and informed conversation within the community and the world. We view diversity as a key enabler for this goal and actively work to ensure that the Enigma community encourages and welcomes participation from all employment sectors, racial and ethnic backgrounds, nationalities, and genders.

Enigma is committed to fostering an open, collaborative, and respectful environment. Enigma and USENIX are also dedicated to open science and open conversations and will make all talk media freely available on the USENIX website.

Call for Speakers

We solicit proposals for original talks on current and emerging topics in security and privacy. All talks will be 20 minutes long, followed by 10 minutes for Q&A. The program committee will select presentations that showcase practical application and operational case studies of big ideas. Ideal talks provide technical or scientific depth combined with impact that is relatable and accessible to a broad audience. Our program benefits from a diversity of topics and perspectives. We're interested in talks that cover new insights into popular topics as well as emerging or more niche areas (e.g., web and network security, abuse, critical infrastructure, cryptography usability, exploit development, consumer privacy, disinformation, national security), and intersections of computer security with other disciplines (e.g., law; biology; economics; cognitive and neurosciences; ethics; social, behavioral, and economic sciences; etc.). We welcome both talks that share pragmatic advice and those that question conventional approaches, so long as they are vendor- and product-neutral. We do not accept talks that seek to promote commercial offerings. We also encourage talks that push the community to evolve, such as those focused on social issues related to security and privacy. You might find it helpful to reference previous years' programs (such as 2019, 2020, 2021, and 2022) to get an idea of the diversity of topics and tone we seek at Enigma.

Enigma emphasizes the effective communication of ideas, in both the content and delivery of your presentation. We are looking for great explainers of ideas: those who can describe complex topics in deeply engaging ways while maintaining the integrity of science and engineering.

To achieve a cohesive program and high-quality talks, the program committee will work with all speakers ahead of the conference via a series of practice sessions to help them craft and best tell their story for the Enigma audience. By submitting an Enigma talk, speakers agree that—if selected—they will participate in three mandatory virtual practice sessions with assigned Enigma PC members scheduled for the weeks of November 7, 2022, December 5, 2022, and January 9, 2023.

Submission Guidelines

To submit a talk, please prepare the following information and submit it to the Enigma 2023 Submission System.

Speaker Information

  • Speaker Name
  • Speaker Title and Company/Affiliation (if applicable)
  • Speaker Email Address
  • Speaker Bio
  • Link to a video of a previous talk (must not be on same topic; links to private/unlisted videos okay; if you don't have one, you can record yourself)
  • [OPTIONAL] Social Networking Handle(s)
  • [OPTIONAL] Homepage

We only accept single-speaker submissions.

Speakers must submit their own proposals; third-party submissions, even if authorized, will be rejected.

Presentation Information

  • Talk Title
  • Presentation Summary. Please include (1) the core idea, (2) why it matters, and (3) a brief summary of prior work either by yourself or in the field. We encourage participants to use the following format:
    • An abstract of the talk that explains what it's about and what the audience can expect to learn from it. We will use this to understand technical merit and, if selected, for promotional purposes.
    • A single main takeaway point for the talk. Describe the big idea motivating your talk.
    • A detailed outline for the talk. The more information you provide, the easier it is for our program committee to understand the meaning and intention behind your arguments. We won't be able to reach out for clarification if anything is unclear before making our selections.
    • Approximate total length: 3 pages
    • Optional: Are you releasing code alongside your presentation (e.g., tool, library, exploit)? We will use this for context, but doing so is not required for acceptance.
  • Are you currently submitting this topic to any other conferences held prior to Enigma?
  • Has a version of this presentation been given or accepted to any other venue or conference? If so, explain how this submission is different from your prior work. Original proposals have the highest chance of acceptance for Enigma.

All accepted speakers will be assigned a shepherd from the program committee to help with presentation preparation. To be clear, we want you to talk about your work and your passion in your own way; our goal is to provide feedback to make sure the talk is as clear and engaging as possible. Speakers must participate in the process of giving practice talks.

We encourage you to review the following talks as references for exemplary Enigma talks:

The full set of talks from past conferences are available online for free per the USENIX open access policy.

Both presenters and organizers may withdraw or decline proposals for any reason, even after initial acceptance.

Speaker Benefits

Enigma provides the following benefits for the speakers of all accepted talks:

  • Registration to Enigma: We are happy to offer you complimentary conference registration for yourself. We will contact you with instructions about how to receive your complimentary speaker registration. When you arrive at Enigma, your speaker badge will be available at Speaker Badge Pickup.
  • Travel Support: USENIX is pleased to offer reimbursement for air travel to speakers who do not have employer support. We will also pay directly for your conference hotel room for the night before and of your talk if you lack employer support for that as well.
  • Honoraria: USENIX recognizes the time and effort you put into crafting an excellent talk and presenting it, and understands that every speaker has a different employment situation. Thus we offer honoraria in the amount of $500 to speakers who are permitted to accept such payments and would appreciate the gesture.
  • Talk Production Quality: Speakers will receive dedicated coaching and feedback from program committee members in preparation for their talks, and all talks will be professionally produced and video recorded at a high production value.
  • Copyright: You own the copyright to your work. USENIX does require that you consent, in advance of the conference, to release your slides and video to the general public.


Please contact enigma23chairs@usenix.org.

Proposals are due August 24, 2022